Expect regular trash pickup on Independence Day

July 3, 2012

Issaquah customers should expect regular garbage service on Independence Day.

The holiday falls just after most city customers switch from Waste Management to CleanScapes on July 2.

Customers can continue to use existing carts. CleanScapes plans to add stickers in July to describe what can be composted and recycled.

Though the collection day is changing for some customers, the billing cycle is not changing for anyone. Customers poised for a collection day change should have received a postcard with information about the switch.

Customers with questions can call CleanScapes at 837-1234 or go to www.cleanscapes.com to learn more.

The changeover from Waste Management to CleanScapes affects most Issaquah customers. Allied Waste — a local name for national company Republic Services — hauls garbage in South Cove and Greenwood Point neighborhoods along Lake Sammamish.

CleanScapes is also renovating a space in Gilman Village for a customer service center.

City considers overseeing water, sewer service for all Issaquah residents

June 26, 2012

City and Sammamish Plateau Water and Sewer District officials could end up at loggerheads as the city embarks on a study to assume water and sewer service for the portion of district customers inside Issaquah city limits.

Issaquah officials budgeted $300,000 to study expanded utility service for the entire city. State law encourages municipalities to assume utility services in neighborhoods located inside city limits.

City officials said such a changeover could reduce confusion among customers and enable municipal government to better manage the water and sewer system inside city limits.

Such a change could lead to a showdown between the city and the Sammamish Plateau Water and Sewer District, because the district is bound to shed hundreds of ratepayers if the city expands water and sewer service to all Issaquah residents.

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CleanScapes to offer bear-resistant trash containers to Issaquah customers

June 26, 2012

The next garbage hauler for most Issaquah residents, CleanScapes, rolled out a compressed-natural gas truck and wildlife-resistant containers in recent days, as the company prepares to start service in the city.

The contract between Seattle-based CleanScapes and the city starts July 1, though service in the city does not commence until July 2 because the previous day is a Sunday.

The changeover from Waste Management to CleanScapes affects most Issaquah customers. Allied Waste — a local name for national company Republic Services — hauls garbage in South Cove and Greenwood Point neighborhoods along Lake Sammamish.

In a June 13 ceremony, CleanScapes executives and city leaders celebrated the addition of a hydraulic launch assist, compressed natural-gas powered truck to the company fleet. Officials said CleanScapes is the first company in the Pacific Northwest to use the truck.

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CleanScapes unveils natural gas garbage truck, wildlife-resistant containers for Issaquah

June 15, 2012

NEW — 8 a.m. June 15, 2012

The next garbage hauler for most Issaquah residents, CleanScapes, rolled out a compressed-natural gas truck and wildlife-resistant containers in recent days, as the company prepares to start service in the city.

The contract between Seattle-based CleanScapes and the city starts July 1, though service in the city does not commence until July 2 because July 1 is a Sunday.

The changeover from Waste Management to CleanScapes affects most Issaquah customers. Allied Waste — a local name for national company Republic Services — hauls garbage in South Cove and Greenwood Point neighborhoods along Lake Sammamish.

In a June 13 ceremony, CleanScapes executives and city leaders celebrated the addition of a hydraulic launch assist, compressed natural-gas powered truck to the company fleet. Officials said CleanScapes is the first company in the Pacific Northwest to use the truck.

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CleanScapes prepares to start Issaquah garbage service

May 29, 2012

Customers can expect to see green-and-orange CleanScapes garbage trucks along Issaquah streets after July 1 and, in the meantime, postcards from the company in mailboxes.

The next hauler for Issaquah garbage launched a community outreach campaign in recent days, as the city prepares to change from Waste Management to CleanScapes. The effort is meant to inform residents about options for curbside recycling and cart sizes and, for about 1,000 customers, a collection day change.

The changeover affects most Issaquah customers. Allied Waste — a local name for national company Republic Services — hauls garbage in South Cove and Greenwood Point neighborhoods along Lake Sammamish.

In October, City Council members selected Seattle-based CleanScapes to haul Issaquah garbage from July 2012 until June 2019.

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Overdale Park residents face steep fee to resolve water problems

April 17, 2012

Overdale Park homeowners could pay about $15,000 per household to change water utility providers — a transition meant to eliminate years-old concerns about arsenic contamination and fire protection.

The hillside neighborhood near the former Albertsons store in North Issaquah is involved in a process to integrate into the Sammamish Plateau Water and Sewer District. The next step is to create a special district for Overdale homeowners to fund $1.1 million in improvements to the aging water infrastructure in the neighborhood.

The decisions to shift Overdale into the district and upgrade infrastructure came after officials discovered arsenic contamination in a well near East Lake Sammamish Parkway. The other Overdale well could no longer meet residents’ demand after decades of use. The neighborhood includes about 140 residences.

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Some Issaquah customers could pay more for water, sewer

March 27, 2012

Overhauling the rate structure for the Sammamish Plateau Water and Sewer District could help stabilize the revenues from year to year at the expense of lowering the financial incentive for water conservation.

The revised rate structure could mean a 17.1 percent hike for sewer service and 8.6 percent increase in the cost of water for the average single-family home. The increased rates could help make up a more than $2.3 million deficit in the district budget.

The district is investing in updated pipes, pumps and other infrastructure to accommodate growth, but revenue is falling due to lower water consumption by customers.

The average home in the district uses about 1,400 cubic feet of water in a two-month period and could pay a water bill of $68.98 under the overhauled rate structure — up from $63.50 under current rates. The rise in sewer could be more drastic, from $42.96 every two months for the average homeowner to $50.34 for the same period.

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Join 48th Legislative District lawmakers for town hall meeting

February 8, 2012

NEW — 6 a.m. Feb. 8, 2012

Residents can join Issaquah legislators to discuss the ongoing session in Olympia at a town hall meetings in Redmond soon.

Meet state Sen. Rodney Tom and state Reps. Deb Eddy and Ross Hunter — 48th Legislative District lawmakers — at the Feb. 18 meeting. The session comes as the Legislature confronts a $1.5 billion shortfall in the state budget.

In Issaquah, the district encompasses Greenwood Point, South Cove and other neighborhoods along Lake Sammamish.

The meeting is scheduled for 10 a.m. to noon in the Council Chamber at Redmond City Hall, 15670 N.E. 85th St.

Washington State Redistricting Commission members shifted the 48th District elsewhere in the recent reshuffling. (Remaining Issaquah neighborhoods fall inside the 5th and 41st legislative districts.) The realigned political maps go into effect for the November election.

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Senators offer key support for same-sex marriage bill

February 7, 2012

Issaquah legislators offered key Republican support for the same-sex marriage bill passed in the state Senate on Feb. 1.

Cheryl Pflug and Steve Litzow joined the 28-21 majority to endorse the legislation.

So far, a half-dozen states — Connecticut, Iowa, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York and Vermont — plus Washington, D.C., allow same-sex marriage. Washington state has had a domestic partnership law — or “everything but marriage” law — in place since 2009.

Cheryl Pflug

Steve Litzow

(Pflug, a former state representative from Maple Valley, represents the 5th Legislative District; Litzow, a freshman senator from Mercer Island, represents the 41st Legislative District.)

Issaquah’s other senator, Democrat Rodney Tom, also endorsed the legislation. (Tom represents the 48th Legislative District, including the Greenwood Point and South Cove neighborhoods.)

The measure heads next to the state House of Representatives. The bill is expected to easily pass the House and proceed to Gov. Chris Gregoire to be signed into law.

The governor, a Democrat, endorsed same-sex marriage legislation last month. Gregoire praised the Senate decision.

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Bellevue utility tax hits some Issaquah residents

February 7, 2012

Bellevue officials decided Jan. 23 to impose a utility tax on water customers in Greenwood Point and South Cove — Issaquah neighborhoods served by the Bellevue municipal water system.

Bellevue City Council members approved extending a utility occupation tax to the water utility’s revenue, including for customers beyond Bellevue. Starting March 1, customers should start to see a 10.4 percent increase on water bills. The change does not affect customers in Bellevue.

Officials intend to use the additional dollars for fire hydrants, oversized pipes and reservoir storage.

The decision followed a 2008 state Supreme Court ruling related to how cities pay for municipal fire hydrants. The ruling in Lane v. Seattle identified hydrants as a general government service and not a utility.

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